Gameday Coverage: No. 7 Penn State vs. Illinois
It’s time for game three, folks.
After two home wins, No. 7 Penn State football is hitting the road Saturday to take on Illinois in Champaign in the Nittany Lions’ Big Ten opener. The Fighting Illini are 1-1 to start the season after a difficult loss to Kansas a week ago, while Penn State dominated its opening opponents of West Virginia and Delaware.
While last week’s game against Delaware wasn’t televised on traditional networks, the Nittany Lions are back on the air as part of FOX’s Big Noon Kickoff. With a noon kickoff set, let’s dive into how to experience Penn State this weekend.
Penn State is on FOX for the first time this year, and the Nittany Lions are getting the network’s top crew. Gus Johnson and Joel Klatt will be on play-by-play and color commentary, respectively, while Jenny Taft will provide coverage from the sidelines.
Penn State Sports Network — Steve Jones and Jack Ham
Local: 99.5 & 103.7 FM/1450 AM, Sirius/XM/Internet: 83/83/978
The weather in Champaign will be similar to that in State College. Accuweather’s forecast predicts the game will start with temperatures around 72º and finish around 75º. The sun should be out throughout the whole gameday, though clouds are expected to come in around 8 p.m.
Yes, that one.
Penn State dropped its last game to Illinois 20-18 in a nine-overtime thriller that gave the team its second loss in a 2021 season that quickly went downhill afterward. The game remains the college football contest with the most overtimes ever.
Penn State was without defensive end Amin Vanover, defensive tackle Coziah Izzard, and cornerback Daequan Hardy for its first two matchups of the season. All three players were full participants at practice viewing earlier this week, however, James Franklin declined to provide any updates on their availability for Saturday. Omari Evans has been questionable for the past two games but played against Delaware. Wide receiver and special teams ace Malick Meiga was also absent from last week’s contest.
The Nittany Lions are -600 and 14.5-point favorites against Illinois, per FanDuel Sportsbook. The over-under is set at 48.5 points.
Onward State will have you covered throughout tonight’s opener. Find big plays, analysis, photos, and more on our main Twitter account @OnwardState as well as play-by-play commentary from @OnwardStSports.
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About the Author
Ryan Field was a sea of white in the Nittany Lions’ week five return to Illinois on Saturday.
No location or opening timeline has been released yet.
The schedule is highlighted by a Monday night dual against Rutgers at the Bryce Jordan Center in February.